“A love of pharmacy”

Written by Johanna Leggatt, Journalist

A love of pharmacy runs in Maddi’ Parker’s blood. The Southern Highlands pharmacist was raised on top of a pharmacy, five of her family members work in pharmacies, and her first job as a teenager was — yep, you guessed it — in a pharmacy.

“I’ve worked in the industry for many decades and the great thing about working at Moss Vale Community Pharmacy is the connection with the customers,” Maddi’ says.

“We get to know people very well, and you see many generations of the one family coming through, from children to great-grandparents.”

Maddi’ bought the Moss Vale Community Pharmacy about five years ago, becoming just the third owner of the iconic small business in almost 100 years.

“The pharmacy has been here for more than 90 years,” Maddi’ says.

“The last owner ran it for 47 years, so it has become a big part of the community.”

When Maddi’ took over, she signed up for the MedAdvisor program and app as a way of streamlining her customer service and improving time management.

“It’s particularly useful for us because it allows us to spend less time in admin and more time with the customers,” she says.

“Because MedAdvisor is taking care of all the back-end work for you, you’re more able to focus on your job.”

Maddi’ also likes the way MedAdvisor allows her to add data relating to Pharmacy Practice Incentives (PPIs), which makes claiming on the 6CPA portal for MedsChecks and Clinical Interventions easier.

She is also particularly impressed with the “snap and send” option on the app, which allows her customers to take a picture of their new script and send it to her from their doctor’s surgery.

“By the time they walk in the door, we can have the medication ready for them,” she says.

Customers can also readily see when their prescriptions are running out or expiring.

“People don’t like to go to a doctor for just one script, so it can let people know when a few are due for renewal,” Maddi’ notes.

Many of her customers are carers for sick wives, husbands or even children with a disability, and MedAdvisor allows her to stay engaged with families’ health needs.

“You get to know the entire family, what their concerns are, who they’re caring for and you’re better able to help them,” Maddi’ says.

Dispensary manager Emma Shepherd is another big fan of MedAdvisor, which she says was initially introduced to attract a younger crowd to the pharmacy, but has been universally well-received.

“The funny thing is, the older customers have loved it just as much and they find it very user friendly,” Emma says.

“We have only had positive feedback.”

The app also acts as a great information tool for customers.

“If we’re holding special events at the pharmacy, such as free hearing checks or beauty pamper days, we can let them know through the app,” Emma notes.

Maddi’ also points out that while the MedAdvisor technology is very much of the 21st century, the app encourages old-fashioned customer service and connection.

“Developing those relationships with our customers is really important because as a small business we rely on those connections,” she says.

“One of the challenges we face over the next few years as a community pharmacy is encouraging people to shop local and not self-select in a supermarket, online or one of the bigger stores.

“It’s about pressing home to people the importance of the continuity in their healthcare, and MedAdvisor also helps ensure they will return as the customers’ scripts are on file with us.”

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This story was written by Johanna Leggatt. Johanna is an Australian journalist with more than 15 years’ experience in both print and online. She has worked across a wide range of subject areas, including health, property, finance, interiors, and arts.

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